Sausage-Stuffed Mushrooms

Appetizers, Gluten-Free, Party Food, Pork / Friday, December 3rd, 2010

UPDATE!: Congratulations to our winner, Marilyn, who snapped up the signed copy of Ina Garten’s “Barefoot Contessa How Easy Is That?” Way to go, Marilyn! And thanks to everyone who entered.

No one does party food better than Ina Garten. She’s the Picasso of Puff Pastry.

So, when I saw these Sausage-Stuffed Mushrooms in her new cookbook, “Barefoot Contessa How Easy Is That?,” I knew I had to try them. Sweet Italian sausage mixed with chopped mushroom, scallions, garlic, panko, mascarpone, Parmesan and parsley, stuffed inside extra-large mushrooms, and baked until the stuffing is browned and has a nice crust on top.

They’re absolutely scrumptious and so easy to make, you might never look at a grocery-wrapped cheese ball again.

You start by gently tossing the mushrooms in olive oil and Marsala, so the mushrooms can absorb those flavors while you’re making the stuffing.

For the stuffing, everything goes into one skillet once you’ve browned the sausage. Most stuffing recipes call for cubes of bread, but this one has crispy panko crumbs for a little crunch. The other twist is the mascarpone, an extremely creamy cheese used here to bind everything together and add a little tang. (If you can’t find mascarpone, use cream cheese. It’ll be our secret.)

Before you start filling the mushrooms, be sure to taste the stuffing. Since the sausage is cooked, it’s completely safe. You want to make sure the stuffing is well seasoned so that it counters the blandness of the mushrooms.

When the mushrooms come out of the oven, they’re warm and spicy, with just the right amount of crunch on top.

If you make these for a party, be sure to taste one (or two) before you head out. You might not have another chance!

Now, let’s celebrate the return of holiday party food with a Barefoot Contessa Giveaway!

The Prize:

One (1) SIGNED copy of Ina Garten’s  “Barefoot Contessa How Easy Is That?”

To Enter:

Go to the Comments section (at the bottom of this post), and answer the question:

If the Barefoot Contessa were coming to a party at your house, what would you serve?

Here are the rules:

1. One entry per person.

2. Enter by 2 p.m. CST on Wednesday, Dec. 8.

3. The winner will be chosen randomly using

Good luck, everyone! Can’t wait to read your answers.

Sausage-Stuffed Mushrooms

Slightly adapted from Ina Garten’s “Barefoot Contessa How Easy Is That?”

Makes 16 servings

  • 16 extra-large white mushrooms
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons Marsala wine or sherry
  • 3/4 pound sweet or hot Italian sausage, removed from the casings (regular or gluten-free)
  • 6 scallions, white and green parts, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 2/3 cup panko crumbs (regular or gluten-free)
  • 5 ounces mascarpone cheese, preferably Italian (can substitute with cream cheese)
  • 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. Remove the stems from the mushrooms, and chop them finely. Set aside.
  3. Place the mushroom caps in a shallow bowl, and toss with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and Marsala. Set aside.
  4. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage, crumbling it with the back of a wooden spoon. Cook the sausage for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until it’s completely browned.
  5. Add the chopped mushroom stems, and cook for 3 more minutes.
  6. Stir in the scallions and garlic. Cook for another 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  7. Add the panko crumbs, stirring to combine evenly with all the other ingredients.
  8. Stir in the mascarpone. Continue cooking until the mascarpone has melted and made the sausage mixture creamy.
  9. Take the pan off the heat, and stir in the Parmesan and parsley. Season the mixture with salt and pepper, to taste. Cool slightly.
  10. Arrange the mushrooms in a baking dish large enough to hold all the mushrooms in a snug single layer. Pour any remaining olive oil and Marsala from the soaking dish onto the mushrooms. Fill each mushroom generously with the sausage mixture. Bake the stuffing for about 50 minutes, until it’s browned and crusty.

Gluten-Free Tip: Be sure to use GF Italian sausage and panko.

Nutritional Information (per serving) – PP+ = 5

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256 thoughts on “Sausage-Stuffed Mushrooms

  1. I'd serve Barefoot Contessa a Chicken Fresco dish with vine ripened tomatoes and a light vinagrette on top. On the side, i'd have grilled green beans, mushroom risotto, and garlic biscuits. For dessert, kahlua cake!

  2. If she were coming to my house for dinner, I would prepare Vermouth Chicken. It is simple and yummy. I'd do some sort of potatos on the side as well as fresh fruit and veggies. I'd probably finish with a flourless chocolate cake or a lemon tart, depending upon the season.

  3. Ina is a wonder woman. I have officially invited her to our wedding next October. Of course she won't come, but imagine if she did! We'll be serving risotto (that we're making ourselves as part of the reception — taking advantage of our groomsmen and dads) paired with antipasti and wines. I hope she'd appreciate the rustic simplicity.



  4. I would serve her my Asian pea pods as an appetizer and then some sort of warm and comorting wild rice soup with crsty bread.

  5. First off, I would panic. Come on, INA is coming over? CRAP! So first, I'd send out a separate note to all of the other attendees telling them to be on their best damn behavior for Ms. Garten and that they are 100% NOT allowed to bring Bud Light Lime to this party. (This SHOULD go without saying for all of my parties, but somehow the reminder is still needed.) Then I'd start planning the menu.

    To avoid having to stress over plating, I'd go family style, centered around a butternut squash lasagna with fontina cheese, caramelized onions, lots of garlic, and whole wheat noodles. I'd have some crudites, cold shrimp, and sliced toasts with romesco sauce out for an appetizer, along with some white wines. (Hopefully the infinitely graceful Contessa would turn a blind eye to my completely unsophisticated taste in vino.) And some kind of unfussy green salad to go with the lasagna, dressed with a homemade lemony vinaigrette, cracked pepper, etc. Dessert? That lasagna is pretty heavy, so I'd stay light and bust out my li'l KitchenAid ice cream maker attachment and whip up a coconut-lime sorbet ahead of time so that I wouldn't have to reach that point, mid-chat with Ms. Barefoot herself where I must excuse myself to heat a dessert. (Tragic.)

    Oh man. Now I'm hungry.

  6. I would serve Ina a light, classic Italian menu. I would begin with a simple romaine salad with diced carrots, celery, and peppery arugula, tossed in a light apple cider vinegar dressing and freshly shaved parmesean. For the second course, my classic baked Italian meatballs with slow-roasted tomato sauce, layered over angel hair pasta, drizzled in olive oil and lemon juice. To drink, an Italian moscato. For the finale, my grandmother's traditional tiramisu served alongside a doppio espresso.

  7. I agree with the roast chicken. I'd serve this with an arugula and goat cheese salad, a creamy risotto and amazing thick crusty bread. For dessert, I'd go simple with homemade fudgy brownies and vanilla gellato. And since Ina only lives 45 minutes from me, maybe you could make this happen, LOL!

  8. Possible a dinner full of her recipes that my mom and I have tried and loved! The warm tuna salad, lemon cake for dessert, it would be delicious!

  9. I'd serve Coq A Vin with a nice crusty bread and maybe a Pinot Noir. For dessert – Chocolate Cupcakes with Ganache Frosting. And then I'd faint!!

  10. I'd be so nervous, I'd get my best friend/favorite kitchen buddy to help me. I think we'd do a nice oyster stew for starters, a goat cheese and asparagus-stuffed tenderloin of beef with potatoes Anna for the main course, and a gingerbread trifle for dessert.

  11. I would serve the Barefoot Contessa my Bacon Corn Chowder with Rosemary Butter Cookies for dessert!

  12. I'd love to host Ina! She seems so gracious! As for what I'd serve, I think I'd share our family favorites– buttermilk mashed potatoes, chicken fried steak and green beans. For dessert, chocolate meringue pie!

  13. I'd serve her a piece of my favorite praline tart. My family makes it every year for Thanksgiving and it's amazing!

  14. If Ina were coming to my house for dinner I would make her something Texan – a big ole steak, baked potato and pecan pie and LOTS of red wine….

  15. Oh my!! A signed copy???!!! WOW! I would probably fret for days and then serve her roasted tomato basil soup on these cold winter nights. I would make sure to have a cute flower centerpiece and some nice wine too!!

  16. If she came to my house, I'd serve her a nice frozen margarita, accompanied by guacamole, salsa and tortilla chips, mesquite grilled beef fajitas with grilled onions and a variety of peppers, home-made flour tortillas, and peach cobbler with home-made ice cream for dessert. She really doesn't seem like she's ever eaten good Tex-Mex.

  17. I would make a simple salad with figs and a good local cheese. For dessert, I would make something with chocolate and raspberries.

  18. I love Ina! I just purchased this book (as a gift) last night! What to make Ina… oh man, since my go-to recipes are all hers, I'd have to get creative… or just go with her Italian Wedding Soup!

  19. Spicy grilled pork tenderloin, strawberry spinach salad and a good roll. I am sure I would come up with another side dish, maybe a corn pudding. Dessert, I don't know, something simple.

  20. I share some real southwest flavor(as opposed to the New York style southwest). Enchiladas, beans, chilies, whatever I had on hand served up on the patio. I would worry over my lack of J Crew attire though…

  21. If Ina was coming to my house, I'd have to stick with my tried-and-true success meal – grilled chicken parm with fire-roasted tomatoes, an italian-style salad with homemade dressing and homemade french bread. Yumm… now I want to make it!

  22. If Ina came to my house I would start with some local cheese, honey and hazelnuts from around here on some of my bread. Then make her an amazing local smoked salmon dish my husband makes, over handmade noodles. And finish with a -whatever was in season- berry crumble and my vanilla ice cream.

  23. I would serve a grilled veggie and feta sandwich on rosemary bread warmed in the panini press, some spicy sweet potato fries and a lemon tart for dessert, out on my deck, cozy-picnic style. Of course, it would be decorated with twinkly little lights, a pretty table cloth and lots of fresh flowers. She'd love it!

  24. I would be way too intimidated to cook for the Contessa! Would probably do some fancy cheese, fresh fruit and good wine.

  25. I'd be crazy to try to outdo her, so I'd keep it simple. Roast chicken, rosemary potatoes, green beans. It's classic for a reason.

  26. I would be so terrified to cook for Ina! I would probably go with a whole roasted chicken, some mashed potatoes, and a veg of some sort. Just because I know I can't screw that stuff up. ;)

  27. Grilled hamburgers, twice baked potatoes, and chocolate chip cookies. I feel like she might like something different from her usual food.

  28. For a lunch I'd serve a Cauliflower Soup followed by a salad with fennel, roasted rhubarb and oranges (+ bread). If it was a dinner I'd have to go with my favorite lamb (or beef) stew with lemon & figs and a yogurt mint sauce. And then I'd spend the entire meal covertly watching her eat to see if she was liking it.

  29. After screaming with joy and having a minor panic attack, I'd probably decide to serve Ina one of my favorite meals – Sour Cream Salsa Verde Chicken Enchiladas, Guacamole and margaritas. People probably cook fancy food for Ina all the time – hopefully she'd appreciate a simple, delicious Mexican dinner.

  30. Oh gosh, that is hard because I would be so nervous. I guess a nice Sunday roast chicken. It is pretty easy and always delicious!

  31. Whatever I served, I would make sure to use "good" ingredients ;-P I would serve something classic, like roast chicken. Perhaps she'd give me a few pointers along the way.

  32. Grilled salmon rice paper rolls, fresh tropical fruit for dessert. I know this doesn't really seem like something she'd make for herself… But isn't that the point of having someone else cook for you? =)

  33. Honestly? Probably your butternut squash/cheddar/kale bread pudding. My boyfriend and I made it for dinner the other night with turkey meatballs and cranberry sauce, and it was so. freakin'. good. So I'd stick with what I know works!

  34. it's funny how i'm sitting here, seriously contemplating WHAT IF… like i'm really racking my brain, trying to come up with something super impressive, hahahahaha! the best i can come up with is something with roasted beets and goat cheese, but that's only because i've been craving just that for a couple of days now. i'm hopeless! however, if i had her cookbook, specifically a signed one, i might be able to come up with a better menu…
    kristinmik at gmail dot com

  35. Oh gosh — what could i possibly cook for Ina?! I think I would just ask her to cook me something instead hehe :)

    But since that's a cop-out, I would make her something traditionally Japanese — something HOPEFULLY she doesn't cook that often! :)

  36. I'd make Ina a nice grilled steak medium rare, with my favorite sides, butter lettuce salad and sweet potato fries! Dessert would be a fudgy brownie with vanilla bean ice cream.

  37. I'd make her chicken with 40 cloves of garlic. It's delicious, easy to make, and very comforting. It would be served with bread and a good wine of course.

  38. Oh gosh, I'd freak out if I had the chance to cook for Ina…I'd probably be too intimidated to cook anything! Maybe I'd serve a selection of renowned local delicacies–specialty cheeses, sausages, artisan breads, etc. and make her world famous brownies or one of her fab cakes?!?! Oy…..

  39. Hi! I would serve Ina her very own recipe for chicken pot pies… they are so divine. I would serve Tate's Bake Shop chocolate chip cookies for dessert. Those cookies should be illegal! :)


  40. I would definitely panic first and then prepare a big ole pot of crawfish etouffee with garlic bread since it's one of my specialties

  41. I would do an entire meal of tableside dishes and make everything right in front of her just like a restaurant. It's really fun, dramatic and of course, deliciious. I would do a fabulous caesar salad, steak au poivre, and for dessert flaming bananas foster!

  42. My stuffed mushrooms (which involve bacon, cheddar cheese, onions and mayo…oh ya!), chicken diable recipe (which I just learned from Dorie Greenspan's new book, Around My French Table….in which Ina is quoted in saying she plans to cook every recipe in the book!) with green beans and my grandma's apple pie for dessert!

  43. If Ina came to my house she would dine on my pot roast with veggies, fried okra, homemade rolls and an apple pie! A southern meal she wouldn't soon forget ;-)

  44. I'd have to copy the Contessa herself and start off with a stiff cocktail and a selection of three cheeses – attractively displayed, of course – then her recipe for roasted pork with fennel and sauteed cabbage as a main. For dessert, I'd serve her pumpkin banana mousse tart – it's too good to only make it at Thanksgiving!

  45. I would serve her my mother's recipe for chicken paprikash with dumplings and a great hearty rye bread and butter – Thanks for the giveaway!
    Enjoy the rest of your week-end!

  46. So many of my dinner party staples are from her, I would be too terrified to serve one of her own recipes to her. Instead I would prepare homemade ravioli filled with braised short ribs, a crisp salad to cut the pasta's richness, and supply plenty of wine!

  47. My family favorite pork tenderloin with the sauce that makes it so great. Risotto (flavor undecided) and raspberry trifle for desert.

  48. This appetizer looks so good! If the Barefoot Contessa came to my house I would serve her some crab rangoons with chili sauce for an app, stewed venison and dumplings for the main course, and a carrot cake for dessert!

  49. oh I love Ina. but I do know she likes easy parties. Perhaps pizza on the grill with some fun cocktails and a great feta watermelon salad

  50. Hopefully I'd be serving whatever she decided to cook! I suppose if I had to embarrass myself & cook for I'd serve lasagna with salad & homemade french bread…dessert would be something light…fruit or sorbet maybe.

  51. Chicken Cordon Bleu with seasoned rice; simple roasted asparagus, homemade rosemary dinner rolls and Mandarin Orange cake for dessert. Prosecco would be chosen wine.

  52. Depends on the season. If it was summer, I might start our meal with a chilled pea soup. Then perhaps it would lead into capellini with lemons, basil and tomatoes- something simple and refreshing like Ina's take on cooking. I think we'd have a great time.

  53. That is a tough question! I would have to think long and hard. Honestly I would probably make salad, bread and dessert and purchase lasagna from a local place. I would just be too intimidated, even though I am sure she would be very gracious.

  54. Wow! What would you serve Ina? I'd be sooo nervous, but it would probably be prime rib with horseradish sauce, a big green salad, and a simple baked potatoe. I know I can pull these off without too much risk of failure. For dessert, I love Ina's rum raisin rice pudding, so I would most likely serve that to her.

  55. I would served her my seafood stuffed crepe dish. Its the "special occasion" dish around my house… always a winner and fancy1

  56. I'm not sure what I'd serve. I do know my menu would change a lot before I settled on something. Maybe from Barefoot Contessa Family Style, a pasta dish I could prepare ahead of time to enjoy her company.

  57. Being from Florida – Stone Crabs w/mustard sauce & whatever Fresh Fish I can get & for this time of year – Roasted Brussel Spts/Fennel/Carrots & Potatoes.

  58. I would probably panic……and then decide to make something simple that my family enjoys on a Weekly basis. Tasty homemade pizzas with a nice salad on the side.

  59. I'd serve the meal that got me to buy my first cookbook of hers, before I knew who she was, before I knew she was a TV personality: steak au poivre with matchstick potatoes, mixed greens, and strawberry tarts from Barefoot in Paris. It was the beginning of a very one-sided love affair.

    I've made all components of this meal many, many times – it's friggin' delicious! Of course, since then, I've changed things a bit to satisfy my own tastes, but that's what cooking is all about, right?

  60. Being a Florida girl I would make her a delicious macademia nut crusted mahi mahi dish with basmati rice and Florida key lime pie for dessert!

  61. I would love to have Ina as a guest for our Christmas Eve meal. It's a delicious tribute to our Scandinavian roots. Champagne and Aquavit with smoked and pickled fishes, roast pork with red cabbage, potatoes and an assortment of simple, rich winter dishes. Layered applesauce, whipped cream, buttery breadcrumb dessert with a hidden almond inside. If you get the nut, you win the prize! Skaal!

  62. I have beef in Barolo (okay, beef in Yellowtail Cabernet Sauvignon) on my mind because I'm making it tomorrow, but I think it would be a great meal for Ina as well, along with some risotto with sweet peppers.

  63. I'd make the only things I really know how to make well…desserts. I'd have out lemon curd-filled cupcakes with 7 minute icing (a variation on a Cooks Illustrated recipe), the ever so delicious Cooks Illustrated Brown Sugar cookies, and a few family favorite desserts, to introduce her to the magic of, for example, heath bar with pistachio pudding and pound cake.

  64. Gosh, not sure I make *anything* that's Ina-worthy, even if she does like homier type dishes. Maybe roast chicken? One thing is for sure, though–I'd have plenty of flowers around! :-)

  65. Carnitas with this avocado pomegranate salsa I made the other day – I've been craving it. Or I'd try to recreate this mango, lime cilantro salad with seared tuna and pork belly I had a few weeks ago. Something that doesn't seem like her usual fare. :)

  66. I would serve Spicy Peanut Chicken, because it never fails me (and if Ina was coming over, I would be feeling pretty nervous).

  67. I would prepare Sauteed Chicken with Lemon Herb Cream, roasted asparagus and a wild rice pilaf. Dessert would consist of a individual molten chocolate cake with vanilla bean ice cream and raspberry salad. Okay…I admit it…I just drooled on my keyboard….

  68. OMG OMG OMG… Ina Garten… at MY house? For DINNER?! This would be the point where I would pass out cold on the kitchen floor, knocking myself into a coma from which I would probably never recover.__OK, so if that DIDNT happen, I would prepare an appetizer of puff pastry wrapped brie, a soup course of shrimp bisque, a spinach salad with warm bacon dressing, and a main course of garlic shrimp scampi and a rustic ciabatta cheddar rolls w/ honey butter. __I need another month to plan the dessert, but possibly molten lava cakes or a strawberry/apple crostada.

  69. If she came in December, I'd start with some of my to-die-for eggnog (highly potent with lots of brandy and dark rum), then a good dark seasonal beer, then lots of red wine with dinner. Oh, she's staying for dinner? Crispy green salad with blue cheese, dried cranberries, maple-roasted butternut squash and glazed walnuts. Pizza bianco with good stinky fontina, herbs and garlic. Chicken marsala with lots of mushrooms and risotto and broccoli rabe on the side. Mincemeat pie for dessert. Damn that sounds good.

  70. I'd enlist my Italian husband to cook his favorites: broccoli soup, bruschetta, gnocchi, roast beast of some variety, and a roasted squash pie. Yum!

  71. If it was now during winter, I would start with some of my mexican eggrolls with spicy fiesta dip, Then I would go with something like chilli and cornbread, then finish off with chocolate and cinnamon cheesecake! YUM, now I have made myself hungry!

  72. I would serve her AWESOME Mac and Chz! I would also add a dessert from Smitten Kitchen's website (awesome site!)

  73. I would serve Ina my famous Chicken Piccata over angel hair pasta with Roasted Parmesan Asparagus. And for dessert, a Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake.

  74. A good antipasta salad, my famous spaghetti and meatballs (made with venison and pork) and some good red wine. If she wanted dessert, we'd go to DQ afterwards :)

  75. I would take her advice on making a few appetizers (shrimp toasts, marinated skirt steak, and leek & Cannellini Bruschetta) and then buy some (antipasto platter and cheese platter). Every good party needs a signature cocktail…earl grey infused gin with fresh lemon juice and a splash of orange blossom water. There would be wine and other refreshments. Now I want to throw a party! I would love Ina's new book to get ideas.

  76. Thanksgiving dinner with all the trimmings; roast turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce(home made), sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, and pecan pie for dessert.

  77. I think I would make some homemade flour tortillas and pinto bean soup minus the cilantro. She doesn't care for cilantro.

  78. I would make Roasted Chicken with sweet potatoes and fennel, and caramel chocolate brownies with vanilla bean ice cream!

  79. I would make her roasted turkey breast recipe with an olive oil herb rub. It's fabulous, just as she says! Then I would have roasted vegetables and her chocolate cake for dessert. And even though I don't prepare it as fabulously as she does, she's so lovely she never lets on and we have a wonderful evening!

  80. Ina loves French food so I would have to pull out the Julia Child's cookbook and make Beef Bourguignon, a crisp salad, asparagus and a French fruit dessert like Apple Tartin. For some reason, she never seems to serve bread or rolls so I guess I would skip that but I love a really good hot roll myself. :)

  81. I would serve Giada's pizza recipe, the one with sausage and no red sauce. She uses a different type of cheese, but I would just use mozzarella. I would also serve it with a salad and then something pretty simple for dessert, maybe her brownie recipe. J

  82. I would serve her my spinach lasagna, which is my go-to company dish. I wouldn't want to make one of her recipes, because then she'd know if I messed up! As for dessert, I'll decide on that when we finalize the date for her visit.

  83. I would serve lasagna and I wouldn't be nervous at all since I have made it a million times and it is the recipe that my grandmother and mother always used and they grew up in Sicily! I would be nervous about my table setting though…I wish Miguel or Michael could come and make it look beautiful. I love her show and her books…she is so peaceful and makes you believe that you can do anything she can do and just as wonderfully! Thanks for the opportunity to possibly win! I love your website!

  84. Yikes, I can't imagine. I would probably try to keep it simple. Maybe a roast chicken with a strawberry-spinach salad. Or possibly a pot roast if it is winter. And then of course end it with a yummy dessert, maybe creme brulee?

  85. I would do wine, cheese, and other simple hors-devours. Can't go wrong with finger foods. I think good wine, quality cheese, fruit, crudites, something chocolate, and interesting guests having great conversations will alway make for a good party. Everything else is just gravy.

  86. I would make her a drink! haha… something like a sidecar or manhattan that I see her make for Jeffrey on her show.

  87. I think I would serve hamburgers with homemade buns, oven fries, and a big fresh salad. It's yummy, simple, and unexpected for an important dinner. Or maybe chili or chicken enchiladas. I have delicious recipes for both of those, too.

  88. I would serve her her own Chicken Piccata, garlic mashed potatoes and parmesan roasted broccoli. We eat it all the time and when we're done we always sit back and say, "Thank you Ina!" It'd be amazing to get to say that to her face. :)

  89. OMG! If Ina was coming to my house I would freak out. I'm going to at least assume it's summer, so we could use the fresh veggies from the garden. My husband does excellent meats in the smoker, so I would beg him to do that. Grilled and fresh vegetables would be on the menu. We are in KC – BBQ is kind of our regional pride.

  90. I would be freaking out! And I'd probably end up serving her a pizza made from scratch with thin sourdough crust, since I've got that mastered.

  91. I'd serve local seafood freshly caught, a variety of roasted root veggies and apple crisp for dessert with homemade vanilla ice cream on top!

  92. I would serve her tons of appetizers! This way we could chat and have little snacks around us. Things like pita chips and hummus, and definitely guacamole!

  93. This is easy – I'd serve her a boule of my homemade sourdough bread, with some homemade caramelized onion jam and local chevre. We'd drink a crisp Sauvignon Blanc and have a nice little arugula salad, then some brownies for dessert, made with the best chocolate!

    Btw, I made these mushrooms tonight and ate them as dinner! Decadent!

  94. My minestrone….it's the only dish I couldn't possibly mess up and I'd love to get her opinion of it. And a loaf of my homemade bread :o)

  95. I would be terrified to cook for Ina, but I would make a simple salad, a hearty soup, and cornbread–definitely not something from her cookbook–because I know that I could not do it as well as she could.!

  96. In her show, Ina always says that you should only serve guests something that you've made before and know that its very good. That being said, I would serve my pear and bleu cheese salad with apricot nectar dressing (maybe along side some roast chicken!).
    Ina is such an inspiration! Love her!

  97. Whohoo! Sausage-stuffed mushrooms. It's hard to think of anything else while I glimpsing at an image of these! However, if the Contessa breezed by my house for a meal, I would serve her my go-to dish: chicken with mushrooms and goat cheese. It's warm, rich, and delectable! And, of course, I'd invite you, Rebecca, along for the dinner banter.

  98. I would make cloverleaf yeast rolls, stuffed shells from Pioneer Woman site and find a dessert that would be something similar that she might fix…maybe her salted carmels!! The part that would be hard for me would be the decorating of the table that she does so fantastically!!

  99. ina is absolutely brilliant! i love watching her show & just love her sweet voice and the grace she possesses in the kitchen. i would def have to make her beef bourguignon!

  100. I could crank out some amazing Armenian Vegetable Casserole with a small salad crusty homemade bread. Simple and tasty.

  101. If she is coming this evening, I'm serving Chicken Bonne Femme- Oven braised whole chicken w/ mushrooms, bacon,potatoes and onions, a green salad and chocolate soufflee cake for dessert.

  102. Here's one for you… what if Ina Garten AND my amazing grandmother and cook, also named INA, were coming over…what would I serve?

    My Ina always always said, "make sure you leave room for dessert." So in her honor, we'd enjoy an afternoon of sweets and coffee.

    First I'd have to bring out my great grandmother's china, then set the table with my finest linens (after going out to buy some actual fine linens!) and greenery from the back yard- a winter theme.

    On the menu: my Swedish grandmother's Pepparkakor (or Pepparkaka) cookies (one year she made some kind of measuring mistake and the cookies were rock hard- we gave her a hard hat for Christmas and called her "Hard Hat Ina". I think Ina Garten would enjoy that story), Swedish rice pudding, and Ina Garten's pecan squares. Probably a few other cookies/pastries would round out the menu, along with Ina G's perfect coffee, and a few servings of Glögg (mulled wine).

    To have my two favorite Ina's in one place… a girl can dream, right?

  103. Carnitas tacos, cilantro rice and slow-simmered borracho beans. With some awesome guac and melt-your-face-off salsas. Mmmm.

  104. I would serve pot roast with garlic potatoes and a salad. And I'd be terrified that I would mess up something even that simple!

  105. oh my asian beef short ribs with warm balsamic potato salad. and i know she would say "how fabulous is that?" :-)

  106. If Ina were coming to my house for a party, I'd hope it would be the middle of the summer. Then, I would serve sliced tomatoes from my garden with some locally-made mozzarella slices, a "picnic loaf" (grilled garden veggies stuffed in bread that has been spread with fresh pesto and cheese, and then grilled all together), and zucchini bread for dessert. Mmmmm…I miss cooking from the garden…

  107. Without a second thought, I'd serve Ina a beautiful lasagna my Italian mother taught me to make! I've been making it on my own for 19 years.

  108. I'd fix a dinner inspired by her own recipes: a salad with roasted butternut squash and dried cranberries, minestrone soup and a fruit crumble for dessert

  109. I live in Arizona, so I would serve awesome Mexican food, the authentic Mexican food I can get here is removed enough from her repertoire that I won"t have to feel self conscious, at least about the food!

  110. i found a recipe today for apple caramel pork chops… i haven't tried it yet, but i think it sounds contessa-worthy.

  111. Oooh hard question but I think I'd serve a beef roast with roasted vegetables and a citrus yogurt cake for dessert

  112. Hi, Rebecca. Fun question and giveaway – thanks for the opportunity.

    I would serve Ina sockeye salmon from the Pacific, in a ginger-maple-garlic-soy marinade (with wasabi mayonnaise), since she would be out here on the "wet" coast with whatever vegetables were in season, after a salad of local baked goat cheese and greens, and island blackberries (in a cobbler? upside-down French cake from the Pyrenees? pie? it would depend on my mood…). Nothing would be from her cookbooks, and all dishes would have to be simple and things I knew how to do, as It would be quite the dinner party where she was the star attraction.



  113. If Ina were coming to dinner I'd be super-nervous, since she's basically my kitchen idol. I think I'd do grilled chicken fajitas–something flavorful and tough to mess up. :)

  114. Haha…I don't think I could pull myself together enough to prepare her a delicious meal (I'd be scared out of my mind)! But I think I'd probably make a nice seafood risotto with a light salad, some crusty bread and a decadent chocolate-like dessert!

  115. I would serve her my marinated flanksteak, cream cheese mashed potatoes and a salad with homemade croutons with my top secret salad dressing. And dessert would be a milk chocolate cake which I know she would want the recipe for since it is super easy and taste great, oh and it doesn't need to be refridgerated. All of this served on a simple table setting with orange tulips, Ina's favorite. I would definitly have everything I could done in advance so I could spend the rest of the time chatting with her.

  116. I wouldn't serve any of her recipes – I'd be terrified of making a mistake! I'd probably roast a chicken using Jamie Oliver's recipe and peas on the side with a mustard-cream sauce. Freshly baked bread on the side and a seasonal pie for dessert.

  117. I would serve a pork tenderloin with a balsamic glaze, roasted winter vegetables, a spinach salad with apples, walnuts, feta and a balsamic vinaigrette, and homemade vanilla pound cake with a berry compote and whipped cream for dessert.

  118. I would serve her rum cake and community coffee so she could get a taste of the south in her mouth……how easy is that?

  119. I would serve my favorite shrimp and orzo dish (an incredible combination of lemony shrimp with feta and cheesy orzo…OH MAN! My mouth is watering just thinking of it). Then, for dessert, date pudding–layers of date cake, whipped cream, and bananas. I love to introduce others to this simple, elegant, and somewhat off beat dessert.

  120. I would probably serve her a roasted chicken w/ potatoes and asparagus, with lemon pound cake for dessert. Simply delicious. Just her style!

  121. I want to think of something creative, but probably her roast chicken with Moroccan couscous and plum tarte tatin for dessert!

  122. Grilled flank steak, roasted red pepper, and watercress salad. Crusty bread with Boursin or wonderful French unsalted butter. Peaches and cream. And her unbeatable coconut cupcakes for dessert. Sadly, no wine–I'm Mormon!

  123. It was have to be a braised beef dish because I would be way too nervous before hand to be chopping and sauteing.

  124. I would keep it simple, like Ina does. I would start with a warm wild salmon spread on hearty crackers, served with a nice wine. I would follow that up with a hearty baked chicken stuffed with Boursin cheese. Our side would be red potatoes roasted in olive oil with garlic and rosemary. I would make some really nice bread on the side. We would finish with my mothers amazing carrot cake and good coffee.

  125. That's such a tough answer. What to serve her? Well, she'd be coming for breakfast, of course. And it's be a basic breakfast featuring shirred eggs, locally-produced sausage, and a bit of toast. i'm not fancy. i like the basics, and surely Ian would appreciate those, too.

  126. I would serve her something she normally doesn't make – Mexican!! I would make my favorite Carne Asada on the grill, fresh tortillas, guacamole and black bean salsa. And of course, some fabulous margaritas! I would probably end it with a key lime cheesecake with a blackberry sauce.

  127. I would make Indian food, so as to represent my culture and perhaps make something that she has never tried before!

  128. I'd serve a roasted chicken with rosemary and red grapes, and probably a risotto. And her lemon cake with blueberry sauce for dessert. C'mon Over!!

  129. That's quite humorous to think about. I'm not sure what she'd think of my six kids bouncing off the walls. BUT, that said, I'm thinking I'd make the dish my husband and I fight over — Poblano Chile Enchiladas.

  130. That is such a tough question! I would be nervous that none of my food would be up to her standards – that's why I read her cookbooks, not write them!

  131. If Ina came to my house, I would definitely serve handmade butternut squash and goat cheese raviolis with caramelized shallots as our main, keeping these ingredients all local. Then a pear tart in an almond crust for dessert. If only almonds were local…..

  132. I would cry from excitement and make her fried chicken, macaroni and cheese and some sauteed spinach, as that's pretty much my favorite meal.

    I would also wow her with my baking skills with a red velvet cake and homemade ice cream. Yum!

  133. Ina loves something simple, so I think I would go with an antipasto plate with some homemade things like a tapenade and some homemade cheese crackers along with some store bought meats and cheeses. Some good wine, and a good main course like her beef bourguignon or roast chicken

  134. I think I would have to consult a few professional caterers/party planners before deciding what to make and how to decorate…I'm highly unskilled in that area!
    If I had to pick something now, I would go with some Texas BBQ with homemade potato salad, beans, cornbread and rolls. And of course peach cobbler!

  135. I've been on a ribs kick lately, so probably that. Also glorified mashed potatoes, green beans, bread in some form or fashion and a yummy cheesecake for dessert.

  136. I'd serve my award winning Cheesy Potato soup with some warm, crusty homemade french bread and a simple side salad. For dessert my husband's grandma's amazing carrot cake.

  137. I would serve an authentic Mexican dinner with all of my Grandmother's recipes. Ending the dinner with freshly made Sopapillas.

  138. Fig-stuffed pork loin, roasted Brussels sprouts, herb and gruyere biscuits and a butternut squash puree. Only because that's what I'm serving my (new) in-laws for Christmas and cooking for her is only slightly less terrifying than cooking for them.

  139. Ina Garten…WOW! Butterfly and herb brine a turkey, flavor with slices of fresh citrus and thyme under the skin and slow grill till the skin is crispy Throw some asparagus on the grill next to the bird, fluff up some loaded brown rice. Maybe finish with pavlova topped with pastry custard and mascerated berries…Maybe I won't wait for Ina!

  140. I would serve a panic attack. No, wait…maybe something simple and impossible to screw up, like roasted chicken. :)

  141. Yikes, I don't know if I could handle it! Hopefully it would be summer, so I could serve something simple and delicious from our garden.

  142. I think I would only serve desserts because I am pretty sure that a main dish would never turn out as well as hers!

  143. A cocktail, of course! And I think I'd prepare one of my household's favorite Ina Garten meals – Steak Sandwiches and Cornmeal Onion Rings (from Barefoot Contessa at Home). Ina is all about simple entertaining, and I think she'd appreciate a low-key meal.

  144. I can't imagine serving Ina anything I cooked, but with the beautiful snowy weather here in Jackson, WY, I would probably serve her a boeuf bourguignon, but with elk instead! Give her a taste of the west…

  145. hmmmm I think I would keep it simple and make some burgers and top them with her yummy grilled onions. Maybe some sweet potato fries and home made mac and cheese for sides and end it all with chocolate malts! with whipped cream and sprinkles of course.

  146. Grilled Salmon and grilled asparagus with lemon/garlic rice. For dessert…lemon bars with fresh raspberries. I'd probably serve white wine but my husband takes care of that side of things:)

  147. I'd be scared to death about her coming, I wouldn't be able to make a darn thing!! I would take her out to a nice restaurant…then beg her to figure out how to make my favorite meals from there. :P

  148. I would serve her meatloaf and mashed potatoes. She said she loves when someone comes to her house expecting a fancy meal and she serves a nice comfort meal. So I would do the same for her. I love to watch Barefoot Contessa!

  149. I would probably faint if I got to meet her. I LOVE HER and I was so sad that I missed her book signing. So so sad. What do you server Ina??? I would make Korean beef BBQ and mung bean noodle with veggies. Thank you for this recipe. I need something to make this Saturday for my mother-in-law's b-day party!

  150. Hopefully it would just be lunch. Then,I would keep it simple with a roasted tomato/garlic soup and cheese pannini…homemade ice cream for dessert.

  151. If Ina came for dinner, I would have to go with a recipe that generations of my family have been making — goat cheese, garlic and olive stuffed tortellini. It makes a lot and it takes time, but it's worth the effort … and the garlic breath.

  152. If Ina Garten were coming to my house I'd probably serve something rustic like a pork or beef roast. She seems to make things like that on her show.

  153. Wow, that is a hard question. I think I'd serve something simple but elegant. Drunken spaghetti, maybe? With a really lovely salad and some fantastic french bread.

  154. Bruschetta as an appetizer, some form of charcoal grilled thai salmon with wild rice and for dessert… mini honey ginger cheesecakes. :)

  155. Just Love Ina Garten. I would have her over for brunch and serve somthing simple that I prepared the day before. I love her yogurt and granola and scones.

  156. I would definitely not serve her any of her recipes…too much pressure. I guess we'd have some savory cheesecake bites, some canapes, some kind of vegetable dip, perhaps a brie en croute.

  157. I'd make the fabulous Ina a hearty ratatouille with a loaf of crusty no-knead bread and serve her own yogurt lemon cake for dessert.

    Simple and tasty!

  158. this is a fabulous giveaway…i think i would serve really fun make-your-own pizzas and salad with her homemade Caesar dressing!

  159. Hi there, I would serve here one of our favorites and definitely something kid friendly. I am not sure what it would be but It would be easy and would include a salad and bread.

  160. If Ina Garten was coming to a party at my house, what would I serve? Food that could be prepared quickly or ahead of time — so that I would be free to spend as much time as possible talking with her. I would prepare a Mandarin Orange Spinach Salad with a Creamy Raspberry Vinaigrette dressing. For dinner I would serve Ina one of our favorites — Chicken Canneloni a la Passetto accompanied by a really great Chardonnay. And for dessert, something chocolate accompanied by Recioto (a dessert wine).

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